3 biggest portal whiffs for Texas basketball this spring

Multiple factors led to the shaping of this talented Texas portal class who will play a big role in next season's success on the 40 Acres.
JT Toppin
JT Toppin / Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports
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JT Toppin
JT Toppin / Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports

JT Toppin, PF

Speaking of NIL battles, it was likely a bidding war that cost the Longhorns a chance at winning the transfer sweepstakes for MWC Newcomer of the Year JT Toppin from New Mexico. It is rumored that the standout true freshman power forward Toppin received well north of $1 million in a NIL battle to commit to the Texas Tech Red Raiders over Texas a couple of weeks ago.

Texas's highly-rated portal class used up a lot of the resources for Terry to reshape this roster entering his second full season as the head coach of the Longhorns. It was a calculated risk for Texas to put most of its eggs in one basket this spring by pursuing Toppin while he entered the NBA Draft early.

Toppin's portal recruitment is a prime example of how the modern day landscape of college hoops has changed with NIL and the transfer portal. In early May, it looked like Toppin was favoring Texas as a potential immediate impact big man who could cement this team's status as a preseason top 10 squad.

Texas returns sixth-year senior center Kadin Shedrick, senior power forward Ze'Rik Onyema, and redshirt freshman forward Devon Pryor in the frontcourt for the 2024-25 campaign. Terry and Co. also added Kent from the transfer portal and signed high school four-star power forward Nic Codie in the 2024 class to bolster the frontcourt depth.

Lastly, Texas could get additional frontcourt depth and valuable length by signing the former Vanderbilt Commodores three-star pledge and incoming freshman center Vinson on June 3.

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